The Uttarakhand government has requested four additional companies of central paramilitary forces to address the law and order situation in Haldwani’s Banbhulpura. This plea follows recent violence during an anti-encroachment drive led by the district administration.
In a letter to the Union Home Secretary, Uttarakhand Chief Secretary Radha Raturi emphasized the need for additional forces due to ongoing attempts by anarchist elements to disrupt law and order, particularly in the aftermath of the encroachment drive on February 8, 2024, in Malik ka Bagicha area under Banbhulpura police station.
The violence during the anti-encroachment drive resulted in five fatalities, prompting the imposition of a curfew in the area. Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Nainital PN Meena reported the registration of three cases, naming 19 individuals, with an additional 5,000 unknown persons named in the cases.
Earlier, the Ministry of Home Affairs had deployed four companies of paramilitary forces to Haldwani in response to the initial outbreak of violence. Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami condemned the attacks on police personnel during his visit to Haldwani, expressing concern over the attempts to disrupt the peace in the ‘Dev Bhoomi’.
CM Dhami reiterated that the anti-encroachment drive had been conducted in compliance with court directives and criticized the violent response from some quarters. He also inquired about the condition of injured women police officers, administration personnel, municipal corporation staff, and journalists present during the clashes.
Before his visit, CM Dhami briefed the state Governor, Lt Gen (retd) Gurmit Singh, on the law and order situation in the aftermath of the clashes in Banbhulpura. The government remains committed to restoring peace and ensuring the safety of all citizens in the affected area.